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If your patients, like most women, don't know all they should about vulvovaginal health, The V Book: A Doctor's Guide to Complete Vulvovaginal Healthdevoted exclusively to these mattersmay be just what the doctor ordered. Its authors, gynecologist Elizabeth Gunther Stewart, MD, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass., and an expert in vulvovaginal care and sexual-pain disorders, and medical writer Paula Spencer, educate women about their private parts with an in-depth guide to specific problems and their treatments, including vaginitis, skin disorders, vulvodynia, and vestibulodynia. For more information about this 480-page book from Bantam Books, visit http://www.thevbook.com , where you can read a sample chapter on yeast infections and check out its table of contents.
American women with excessive menstrual bleeding due to benign causes ranging from hormonal to fibroid distortions have a new alternative to hysterectomy thanks to a minimally invasive outpatient option recently approved by the FDA. Microwave endometrial ablation (MEA), in use in the UK since 1996, has received the federal agency's okay for treating premenopausal women who've completed childbearing, according to Microsulis Americas, Inc. (Westford, Mass.), the North American arm of Microsulis Medical Ltd.
The procedure, which can be done under local anesthesia in a hospital or office setting, uses microwave energy to rapidly heat the uterine lining. The physician applies therapeutic energy by "painting" the uterine lining with a thin wand-like device inserted through the cervix. A built-in computer link lets the physician monitor and control the treatment, which typically takes 3 1/2 minutes. A clinical trial conducted by Microsulis found none of the rare adverse events that had been documented abroad, and the company claims the device is the first endometrial ablation system to produce complete cessation of bleeding in the majority of patients. For more information, visit the manufacturer's Web site at http://www.microsulis.com .
Two resources for mothers of newborns and their clinicians aimed at optimizing postpartum maternal health are now available from The Association of Reproductive Health Professionals: Postpartum Counseling: A Quick Reference Guide for Clinicians and a companion booklet, Six Week Post-Delivery Planner: A Health Care Guide for New Mothers. The ARHP Guide and Planner, developed with grant support from GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, emphasize good nutrition, weight loss, and exercise. To view or download the complete guide and post-delivery planner, visit http://www.arhp.org/guide . The planner and an exercise plan can be downloaded at http://www.tums.com/source_ pregnancy.asp . In addition, your patient can estimate her daily calcium intake by visiting http://www.arhp.org/calcium or http://www.calciuminfo.com .
The easy grip feature of Securline Umbilical Cord Clamp Clipperdesigned to safely and cleanly cut the clamp off the umbilical cordensures stability and comfort, according to Precision Dynamics Corporation (San Fernando, Calif.). The Clipper's simple single-handed procedure involves placing its "beak" over the cord clamp's hinge area and applying moderate pressure to cut the hinge. Disposableto prevent cross contaminationthe product is packaged individually in easily opened label-sealed glassine pouches, six to a box. For more information, visit the company's Web site, http://www.pdc-healthcare.com .
A new patient education brochure offers guidance and coping tools to women with advanced breast cancer and their families. "Advanced Breast Cancer: A Patient Checklist," a brochure available from the AstraZeneca Cancer Support Network, details the stages of the disease and offers information on various treatment options, as well as a tear-off checklist that a woman can take to appointments with her oncologist. A copy of the brochure is available at http://www.pimsinc.com/pressreleases/Burson/patient checklist.pdf . For more information, call 866-99-AZ CSN (866-992-9276) or visit http://www.visions-of-hope.com .
The FDA has approved a new pre-filled syringe for Ovidrel (choriogonadotropin alfa injection), making it the first liquid, ready-to-inject therapy for infertility, according to Serono, Inc., the US affiliate of Serono S.A. Designed for one-step administration, Ovidrel prefilled syringe will replace the manufacturer's currently available powder form (which requires patients to mix medication before injecting it). After administration of FSH, women undergoing infertility treatments have a limited window in which to take Ovidrel to trigger ovulation. Eliminating the need to "mix" the medication is expected to result in patients making fewer dosing errors, improving their chances of success. For more information on the product, which is expected to be available in November, visit a Web site for both clinicians and patients at http://www.seronofertility.com .
A new line of sleepwear is designed for women who experience night sweatswhether from hot flashes or other conditions like diabetes. According to its manufacturer, Wicking J. Sleepwear, the product is made of a special fabricInterathat "wicks" moisture away from the skin to keep the wearer cool on hot nights and warm on chilly ones. In addition to the tanks, top and bottom sets, and a long-sleeve nightgown, the Evergreen Colo.-based company offers a pillowcase of the same material. Wicking J. Sleepwear is currently available online and in several retail stores. For more information, visit http://www.wjsleepwear.com .
The FDA has approved the antidepressant Paxil (paroxetine HDl) controlled-release tablets for the treatment of premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), a severe form of premenstrual syndrome (PMS). The condition, characterized by intense emotional symptoms like irritability, tension, and depressed mood, as well as physical menstruation-related symptoms, affects up to 8% of reproductive-aged women, according to GlaxoSmithKline, maker of the drug.
The tablet, a multi-layered formulation, is available in three dosing strengths: 12.5 mg, 25 mg, and 37.5 mg. The tolerability and efficacy of Paxil CR for treating PMDD was established in placebo-controlled studies. In these studies, the lowest dose12.5 mg per daywas significantly better than placebo in reducing emotional and physical symptoms of PMDD and results with the 25-mg dose were similar. Patients reported improved social functioning and fewer symptoms that interfered with daily activities. Among the most common adverse events in studies for major depressive disorder, panic disorder, and PMDD were infection, trauma, nausea, diarrhea, and female genital disorders.
New Products. Contemporary Ob/Gyn Nov. 1, 2003;48:117-119.